How To Repair A Shredder If The Spinner Will Not Rotate

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  • Rated as REALLY EASY
  • 4 step by step videos

Cotter Pin or Key

Most simple push or pull-behind spreaders turn the spinner that distributes product by using the motion of the wheels moving. The wheels are connected to an axel, which connects to a gearbox, which then rotates the spinner to spray product from the spreader. If the wheels are moving but the spinner will not spin, check to see if the cotter pin or key that connects the wheel to the axel is not missing or broken. This key or pin locks the axel into place with the wheel and forces the axel to turn when the wheels are in motion. If the key that connects the wheel to the axel is broken or missing, the axel will not be turned and the spinner will not spin to distribute product. Cotter pins are cheap and very simple to replace.


If your spinner will not rotate and the pin or key that locks the axel into the wheel is not missing or broken, there may be an issue with the gearbox. When the axel is spun from the motion of the wheels, its motion is transferred by the gearbox to the rotate the spinner at the bottom of the unit. Gearboxes can wear over time, or can become clogged or locked up with fertilizer, grass or other debris that may enter its assembly while in use. Gearboxes also require grease to lubricate their internal components so the gears can rotate with little resistance. Failure to lubricate the gearbox can cause it to lock up over time. If you believe an issue with the gearbox is stopping your spreader from spinning, detach the gearbox from its connections and open it up to look for any debris that may have caused it to lock up, or to see if any components are broken. A new gearbox can be purchased and reinstalled with relative ease, if required.

Cotter Pin or Spinner Key

The cotter pin or key on the spinner attaches to the shaft that comes vertically out of the gearbox to the spinner itself. This pin or key locks the shaft and spinner in place together, so the spinner is rotated when the spreaders wheels turn. If your spinner will not rotate, the pin or key that holds the spinner onto the shaft may be missing or broken. If this is the case, the pin will need to be replaced. Cotter pins are very cheap and simple to replace.

Drive Motor

If the spinner will not turn and your spreader is equipped with an electric motor, check all wired connections running into the motor to ensure they are connected properly and are not frayed or damaged. Ensure the motor is receiving power and check the cab display (if equipped on your model) to see if any errors or issues are detected that may be causing this problem. Any error codes or messages should be explained further in the user manual for your particular model. Over time, these motors do tend to wear and may fail, in which case the motor should be replaced.

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